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Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones)


Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones)

To everyone with a loved one at the RTC or soon to be there, we say, "Welcome!"  To those who are sticking around after PIR to help those who are just beginning this awesome journey, we say, "Thank you!"

This is a place to talk, ask questions, and share stories. It is our desire that this Group will provide the information, encouragement, and support you need while your loved one is at the RTC in Great Lakes. Enjoy your time here and feel free to Comment and join in the Discussions. Be sure to check out the "Pages" to the right, located under the pictures of the Members, especially OPSEC and PERSEC (Making Changes to Your Profile), (Click "View All" to see all of them.)

Members: 13118
Latest Activity: 5 hours ago

Answers to Common Questions

Are there any official RTC sites?

Yes, check out and They will have lots of information for you. also has items at times.

The RTC will stream PIR live at and beginning at 8:45 am CST on the day of PIR for those who are unable to attend in person.


Can recruits take anything to BC with them?

Recruits should go with what they have on their backs, their cell phones, and not much else. (See Things to Do in the Last Month Before Your Future Sailor Leaves for the RTC.)


What will the first day be like at BC?

See Arrival and What Happens at the RTC and Ship/Division--How it Works.

How long is the "I'm here!" call and when will s/he be able to call again?

See Phone Cards and Phone Calls.


When will "The Box" come?

It will usually arrive by FedEx within a few days, but it can take up to 2 weeks at times.


I got my recruit's address from the recruiter. Can I trust it?

Double-check the address the recruiter gave you against those at, but we strongly encourage you to wait on the form letter before sending mail to your recruit. Sometimes a form letter is not mailed by accident and if it has been at least 2 calendar weeks since your recruit arrived at the RTC and you do not have a form letter, then you can call the recruiter and get the address and mail letters to your recruit, but be sure to double-check the address against those at or Ship/Division--How it Works.


When will the Form Letter come and what is in it?

The Form Letter will arrive in your regular mail a week or so after "The Box" arrives--10 days after arrival is the average, but it can come sooner or 2 to 3 weeks after arrival. (You can find a copy of the current form letter in the Page, The Form Letter. The brochure that is included from MWRGL about hotels and other things is at This form letter is full of info and you will need it to get the vehicle/gate pass if you are driving onto the RTC for PIR, so keep it in a safe place. It includes your recruit's address, so now you can mail out all the letters you have been writing. There is more on this in Letter Writing & Fun Stuff/Questionnaires to send to your Recruit.

The Form Letter will also tell you the date of PIR, so you can start making plans for your trip. There are many hotels in the area and there is information in the grad pack and on this site about them. If you fly in, renting a car will make your life easier. Also, if you are flying, some airlines, such as Southwest, will allow you to change your flight if something happens without a charge, so you do not have to book refundable tickets. Plan to arrive the day before PIR so you won't risk missing this very special event and go to Sarge's Meet and Greet from 5 pm to 10 pm at the Sundance Event Center (go to to RSVP) and maybe part of another Meet and Greet (Ramada Inn has one and sometimes Flanagan's). If your Sailor's "A" School or training is in GL, plan to leave late Sunday or on Monday and if your Sailor will be flying out, then plan to leave late Saturday or on Sunday to have the most time with your Sailor. (This may need to be adjusted if PIR is not on Friday.) See Saving Money PIR Weekend and PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend.


Sarge has a taxi service and he is a wealth of information and has a meet and greet at the Sundance Event Center in Waukegan the night before PIR (go to to RSVP). His cell number is 847-212-0246. His M&G and services have been getting great reviews. Find Sarge on N4M as OldSarge.


Once you know your recruit's PIR date, be sure to join the group for that. New groups are posted on here or you can go to and join the group for that once it has been created.


How do I know who my recruit plans to put on the Access List?

The Form Letter will also include the names of up to 3 or 4 people, depending on the size of the TG, that your recruit plans to put on the Access List about 10 days before PIR (some Sailors have indicated that they submitted the names during the week of PIR). If the names on the form letter are not the same as those who will be attending, write to your recruit and give him/her the names that should be listed as they should be written. Recruits sometimes write “Mom, Dad, Bro, Sis” or other similar names to save time and give them more time to write a short note to you (one recruit wrote a single letter on each line); don’t worry your recruit will write the given names on the Access List when the time comes. If you are concerned that your recruit may not know someone’s given name or the correct spelling of someone’s name, write to your recruit and give him/her the names as they should be included on the Access List. Nicknames that a reasonable person would associate with the name on the ID are fine, but it is best if the names on the Access List match the ID’s of those who are attending. will tell you how many guests your recruit is permitted. Children ages 2 and under do not have to be listed, but all others must be on the Access List in order to attend PIR. The then Sailor is able to change the names s/he has submitted for the Access List up to 24 hours before PIR if needed, but it is best if s/he submits the correct names the first time. Let your Sailor know when you receive the "I'm a Sailor!" call if a change needs to be made.


How do I get the vehicle/gate pass?

About 11 days before PIR the link to download the vehicle/gate pass will be posted at You will need to enter the password from the form letter using all capital letters and then print the vehicle pass and handwrite in the information to fill in the blanks. You can print off more than one vehicle pass if your Sailor's guests will be arriving in more than one vehicle or just to be certain that you know where one is.


What will happen PIR weekend?

See PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend and


Donna is not on the site much now and lemonelephant will be helping out along with many others who have begun this journey before you. (Donna, we are forever thankful that you started this group that continues to help so many.)


Be sure to check out the Pages to the right (under the pictures of the Members) for additional information. (You will need to click "View All" to see all of them.)

Discussion Forum

Ship names numbers & address

Started by Jacqueline Manning. Last reply by lemonelephant Jun 17. 20 Replies

Anyone in Division 229?

Started by Cindy: "Proud Mom of a Nuke". Last reply by LovemySailorAlyssa Jun 2. 8 Replies

PIR Experience

Started by thinNavyblueline. Last reply by dixigrl94 May 25. 46 Replies

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones) to add comments!

Comment by lemonelephant 5 hours ago

Here are the current PIR groups:

PIR: 06/30/2016 TG 34 - 11 Divisions (233-242 and 934) 4 guests (Note: PIR is on Thursday.)

PIR: 07/08/2016 TG 35 - 8 Divisions (243-248, 815 and 935) 4 guests

PIR: 07/15/2016 TG 36 - 9 Divisions (249-254, 816, 817 and 936) 4 guests

PIR: 07/22/2016 TG 37 - 5 Divisions (255-258 and 937) 4 guests

PIR: 07/29/2016 TG 38 - 9 Divisions (259-266 and 938) 4 guests

PIR August 2016 (for all PIR dates in August): PIR 08/05/2016 TG 39 - 10 Divisions (267-274, 818 and 939) 4 guests; PIR 08/12/2016 TG 40 - 13 Divisions (275-286 and 940) 3 guests; PIR 08/19/2016 TG 41; PIR 08/26/2016 TG 42

Click on the date and join to connect with others with loved ones training with your recruit.

Comment by Trojans12 9 hours ago
Sailor Moo.. Good luck! This site is so helpful. Prayers for your recruit!
Comment by PROUDMOM 9 hours ago

if he took his phone he will call you when you arrives and then again when he gets to base. The minute my son left i started writing so when i got the letter about 10 in i had the address to send them. I have found so much comfort on this site. we are all here for you!!! welcome to the journey!!   

Comment by Sailor Moo 9 hours ago
Congrats ShannonM
Comment by Sailor Moo 9 hours ago
My son's flight just left for RTC. NOW THE WAITING BEGINS.
Comment by Actuallychar 10 hours ago

Hi ShannonM,

I'm waiting for the call.  Most likely tomorrow. The waiting is so overwhelming.  Thank you!  

Yea my son told me, tell EVERYONE to write.  It helps them so much that they aren't forgotten.  My son was fairly diligent writing us 4-5 letters a week.  That seemed like the un-norm thing but its what he needed to get through the first five weeks.  After that he was feeling confident and no longer homesick.  He saw the end in sight.  He even became the AROC of his division.  And still is!  I hope this helps him rank up one.  We'll find out Thursday!  

Good Luck Shannon and to all the other new SR's out there. Hooyah!!!

Comment by ShannonM 12 hours ago

Congrats, Actuallychar.  Have you gotten your "I'm a Sailor" call yet?  My son graduates next week, and I'm so excited I can barely think straight! :)

And rock solid advise on writing - they are feeling very isolated & alone and even a one-line note of encouragement or "I love you" speaks volumes to their spirits.  My son loves clips from the sports page or printouts from a FB post of a friend's status.  His favorite was a note from his brother that just said "There's an In-N-Out in San Antonio" (his A School location).  Anything that gets them a little outside of their circumstances for a few moments...

We're all so proud - make sure they know it too.

Comment by Actuallychar 15 hours ago

Write, Write, Write....even if they don't respond.  I wrote my son everyday or sent him a card.  No glitter, no stickers just a simple card of encouragement and letting your SR know you're proud of them.  I wrote about the news, sports, family and my son appreciated it.  Be proud!!  My SR graduates this week!  

Comment by CatMom509 yesterday

Blessed Sunday!!      

       "For He is the living God

       and He endures forever,

       His kingdom will not be destroyed

       His dominion will never end."

                                        Daniel 6:26b

Comment by DonnaCatLover yesterday
My sailor just graduated from boot camp on June 17th. I had 6 letters from him during that time. I wrote probably every other day. My letters were a mixture of motivational (you've got this!, so proud of you!), events that had happened at home, things about my work, how the cats were missing him, what the weather had been like ... Anything that would help fill him in on home. Sometimes I really didn't have any news of importance so I wrote spiritual encouragement things. This old art of letter writing is really quite magical and I've grown to enjoy it. I asked my son if he would keep up the letter writing (and of course I would on my end as well) and he would like to do that. He said that writing letters helped him to destress. I guess what I learned is that it really doesn't matter what you write, just that you write. They like to have that contact from home.

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